‘It would have been terrible without them’ – Doncaster women’s £1,000 thank you to ‘fantastic’ cancer charity

When Dot Finlay began fundraising for the ‘fantastic’ Doncaster cancer charity which helped her late sister, she had no idea she would soon be relying on its support.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 29th May 2019, 9:41 am
Updated Wednesday, 29th May 2019, 11:43 am

Her sister Beryl Keighley sadly lost her battle with the disease in November 2016 and, having come to terms with her grief, Dot was determined to show her gratitude to Firefly, which had done so much for Beryl.

Firefly’s dedicated team of volunteers ferry cancer patients to and from hospital for treatment, giving them one less thing to worry about at such a difficult time, and Dot told how Beryl had found their support invaluable.

Firefly's Chewy Bacchus and Paul Taylor, seated either side of Dot Finlay, are presented with a cheque for £1,000 by Dot's Charity Card Crafters (pic: Marie Caley)

The 68-year-old, of Dunscroft, enlisted the help of her team of crafty ladies, who meet every week to make cards together, to show her appreciation – but she knew a thank you card wouldn’t suffice on this occasion.

Instead, she asked each member to make a small donation every week to the charity, starting last May.

A year later, they have collected £1,000, which they presented to representatives from Firefly last week at during a celebratory lunch at Sunnybank Gardens in Hatfield.

Just two months after they began fundraising, Dot was herself diagnosed with breast cancer last July and got to appreciate first-hand the difference Firefly makes.

“They took me from my home to Weston Park Hospital in Sheffield and back, just like they’d done for Beryl,” said the grateful grandmother-of-seven.

“I wanted to do something for them because of how they’d helped my sister, who couldn’t find the words to describe how wonderful they were with her, but I never thought I’d end up needing to use them so soon.

“I finished my treatment in November, and I’m doing OK, but it would have been terrible without them.

“When you’re having your treatment, it really takes it out of you, so having someone to take you to and from the hospital makes such a difference.

“Firefly’s a fantastic charity and all the volunteers are lovely people, so it’s great to be able to do something to say thank you.

“It would be nice if more people could know what a fantastic job Firefly does for people in the Doncaster area.”

Firefly, which also seeks to raise awareness of cancer and how to spot the symptoms so people can be diagnosed as early as possible, was founded in 2006 by Denise Dunn.

It is now run by her fiancé Chewy Bacchus and close family friend Paul Taylor, who took over after she sadly passed away in 2014.

For more about the charity, and how to donate, visit www.firefly-support.co.uk.